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Grace Wasinger


About Grace

Year: Senior
Major: Psychology
Hometown: Hays, KS
Faculty Mentor: Dr. April Park
Research Recognition: 2021 Outstanding Undergraduate Scholar and 2021 Torch Award Winner

Learn more about the Outstanding Undergraduate Scholar Award

Learn more about the Torch Award (FHSU Alumni Association)

Describe Your Research

While at FHSU, I have been fortunate enough to work on a variety of projects both collaboratively and independently with faculty and students. My research has broadly related to media effects, particularly evaluating how media sites play a role in behavior, perceptions, and memories in individuals. Recently my manuscript entitled, "#Trending: The Impact of Twitter on the Creation of False Memory" was accepted for publication at the Journal of Psychological Inquiry.

Currently, I am working on a project with Dr. April Park that aims to examine the impact of need for cognition and information load on individuals' likelihood to seek for additional information and comment on a social media thread. Using COVID-19 mask usage will allow us to understand information fatigue in the current social climate. This study investigates a gap in the literature concerning how media fatigue and need for cognition influence the nature of comments media users leave and also if they choose to seek more information before posting.

Her inherit drive has served her well as she honed her research skills to the level of being asked to present at numerous regional and national conferences. She is described by faculty as being dedicated, engaged in the field of psychology, and motivated in all of her aspirations and goals. Grace has also served in leadership roles in various organizations and has assisted in teaching classes for the department.
Dr. Jill Arensdorf
Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Dr. Jill Arensdorf

What was it like sharing your research?

While presenting at conferences, such as the Association for Psychological Science and the Southwestern Psychological Association, I found that discussing research methodology and results with others is one of the most rewarding things about conducting research.

Sharing my research at the Kansas Undergraduate Research Day at the Capitol was an eye-opening experience because I got to see how the research I conducted could help Kansans and lawmakers.

What are your future career goals and how does this research experience prepare you for the future?

After graduating from Fort Hays State University, I will attend Iowa State University's Social Psychology Doctoral program beginning fall of 2021. The research mentors that I have worked with at FHSU have poured knowledge and rich values into me that will continue to influence my career aspirations.

Why would you recommend other students get involved with research or scholarly activities at FHSU?

The undergraduate research experience (URE) allowed me to grow both academically and personally. The URE allows for students to gain valuable faculty mentorship, professional opportunities, and an expansion of knowledge and interests. All the benefits of conducting undergraduate research are transferable to post-graduation success.